Peanut Butter is Paul Bugala and David Diaz; the band has been together since 2009, but this is their first record. Incorporating rock, folk, punk, and metal sounds, these guys are almost as versatile as George Washington Carver’s miracle legume.
For a two piece band, Peanut Butter conjures up a lot of noise; the album starts with relentlessly crashing drums and fuzzy guitar on opener “Hey Kids,” and the band doesn’t let up until the supermellow tune “Breathe,” only to pick back up again. Producer Devin Ocampo (Beauty Pill, Medications, Faraquet, and lots more) lays some bass down on several tracks; Becky Warren and Toby Fallsgraff also contribute some vocals. The guests go a long way in fleshing out Peanut Butter’s sound, but Bugala and Diaz sound pretty good when they’re by themselves, too.
Their songwriting is one of the record’s high points as it veers from insightful to delightfully dorky. Case in point: “Francis Xavier,” in which the boys sing “you don’t have to be a saint to be a savior” and also cite the old adage “life isn’t all beer and Skittles” (in absence of liner notes with lyrics, that’s what I heard and I’m going with it).
A song or two—like the so-so track “Mothers and Daughters” with its verging-on-emo vocals—could have been cut from the nine song album in order to make this a tight EP, but as a debut record, Peanut Butter shows a lot of promise. It’s currently available for $5, so dip into your Easter candy budget and give it a whirl.
Top Tracks: “Francis Xavier,” “Breathe”